CHILDREN OF BODOM RACING AT THE TOP
(text: Nalle Österman, pictures: Iiska Siirilä)
picture text: Alexi proves us that he is a metal man also when
wearing a boiler suit)
picture text: Alexi is going really fast)
COB is here again. Their single
You’re Better Off Dead hit the top of the charts in Finland and gave
way to the newest album Hate Crew Deathroll, which proves us that COB
still is a part of the metal elite of Finland. The silence in Finland
has ended and it’s time to step on the gas. Vrroooommm!!!
Bodom’s singer/guitarist Alexi Laiho and keyboardist Janne Warman are
both really into cars. Alexi told us that he had just put a new
engine into his Pontiac Firebird, and that’s where all his money went
then and now he’s going to only eat rice for a while. To Janne a car
is not only just a vehicle, it is much more. Driving your own car
feels like you have achieved something.
”Me and Alexi we
were supposed to buy (from the movie Blues Brothers) the bluesmobile,
you know, a Dodge Monaco 1974 painted to look like a police car. Now
that would be a nice sleigh.” Janne says.
Now because we
didn’t get to try out any bluesmobiles or Lamborghinis, and Kimi and
Mika’s Formulas are probably stored away for the winter, we decided
to make our way to Vantaa VM Karting Center. It’s the biggest indoors
kart racing center in northern europe, and the race track is 530
”Now we are
gonna lose our reputation completely!” Alexi whines. His mood isn’t
the best right now. He has just come back from his other band
Sinergy’s european tour that lasted a month. He says recovering from
it takes about a week. ”I’m so not wearing that!!” Alexi cries as
he sees the blue driving suits.
The album name gets people talking
instructions it’s time to get to the driving. The beginning is a
little slow but the lap times get better pretty fast. Ten minutes of
driving goes past like flying and it turns out that controlling the
cars isn’t as easy as it seemed at first.
At first Alexi
turned out to be the fastest of the three drivers, but after a second
try, our reporter notices he has defeated the metal stars. Instead of
spraying champagne, we are using soda. The defeated musicians decide
to check out the dumpster outside the hall to see if there’s room for
a couple losers.
”It was fun but
I would have enjoyed this more if I wasn’t so tired…” Alexi
”I was actually
supposed to come here earlier with Timo Kotipelto but we somehow
kinda forgot about it. But I’m totally gonna do this again!” Janne
Could your newest
album name refer to a death rally?
a list of people who have died in a war. It can also mean the kind of
people who need to fuck off and die.” Alexi explains. ”Also it
can mean that we may not live very long! …It’s probably the first
time anyone has asked us anything about the album name. There’s four
very strong words in there, I guess it works then.”
The gig of nightmares
COB is known to be
an energetic live band, to whom the more exotic countries have become
familiar too. Before the finland tour in March, they are going to
tour in Japan and then in the summer some USA. Then the fall is spent
in South America, Japan and maybe even South Korea, Australia and
USA. The traveling isn’t always to glamorous though.
”That show in
Columbia was personally for me probably the most horrible experience
ever. It has to do with this thing that when we got there I bought a
burger, and the beef in it was raw. I was so hungry I just had to eat
it. Then during the show things started happening in my tummy… I
had to play the show with shit in my pants!!” Janne reveals.
”I got mad whe
we got back to Finland after the South American tour. Our website was
full of comments like ‘Alexi and Janne are assholes because the left
the signing session too early!’ Hey, we hadn’t had any sleep in two
days and we had to play a show the next day! Just think about it, we
had been up for 30 hours in a row and played a couple shows to the
columbians and we were sick too. And then in return we got called
rockstars and assholes!” Alexi sighs.
think there are some easier ways to get paid than this. Even though
we love touring it is sometimes really hard. But it is also very fun
on the road, whenever some six week european tour is ending I feel
like continuing it for another six weeks.” Janne says.
belongs on the road. We are at our best live” Alexi says.
What is your best
”I think it’s
Wacken last year.” Alexi says.
things are a little unsure when we can’t take much time to try out
the sounds. But there the audience was so great, that we played
perfectly too. Then after Wacken it wasn’t so good, when we went to
Switzerland. We played so badly, some awful punks could have played
our songs better.” Janne complains.
”It’s good to
get your feet back to the ground once in a while” Alexi says.
”Mom and dad have always supported
COB isn’t happy
about the music trends nowadays.
”This is this
kind of MTV-culture. They find nice faces and make them stars. It
pisses me off when very good bands and artists go unnoticed. The big
magazines don’t care about finnish metal bands, eben though they are
the most successful finnish acts globally. Suddenly there’s some pop
band and after one single there’s a huge fuss.” Alexi says.
”But I also
don’t really want to become a huge celebrity in Finland. Now I can
just go to the gas station without anyone disturbing me.” Janne
success feels good though. You never know when your success will end.
But I think the best thing about the chart success is that we got
that fucking ketchup song off the first place for at least a week!”
Where have you put
your gold albums?
”There they are
collecting dust in the basement… No they are on the wall at home of
course.” Alexi explains.
couple on the wall and a couple in the closet… There wasn’t enough
holes in the wall…” Janne says.
Did your parents
ever tell you to stop this metal thing when you were just starting
out? Have their opinions changed when you have become successful?
”My mom and dad
have always supported me. I told them already on the seventh grade
that I’m not going to go to high school, I just wanna play rock n
roll. They have been in the music business too so it never was a
problem for them at all.” Alexi explains.
”My mom thinks I
should study. The situation has changed now that I have begun to earn
enough money to support myself though.” Janne says.
FAVORITE CARS TOP 3
Dodge Charger (1971) 2. Pontiac Trans Am SE (1977) 3. Dodge Monaco
Ferrari 355 2. BMW M5 3. Mercedes Benz 300 SL Gullwing (1955)
picture text: Get out of the way here comes Janne!!)
picture text: Alexi’s sharp right turn)
picture text: Reporter Nalle Österman celebrates as the winner,
Janne and Alexi are cursing their defeat.)